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Paraskevi ZERBISIAS

Obituary
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ZERBISIAS, Paraskevi
"Loula" (Glezos)
Peacefully on December 9, 2013 in her 97th year, Paraskevi "Loula" (Glezos) Zerbisias, at Montreal's Jewish ElderCare Centre. Predeceased by her husband Petros (Peter), and all 10 of her brothers and sisters John, George, Peter, Mike, Sophia (Demetelin), Despina (Xanthos), Nick, William (Billy), Katina (Liberopoulos) and Margo Glezos. Her work caring for them was done. Survived by her children Dionysia "Denny" (the late Martin Bergman), Antonia and George (Sylvie Thiffault) as well as the two nieces she raised as daughters, Irene Glezos (Steve Argyris) and Irene Xanthos (David Field.) She will be missed by her grandchildren Maria Argyris, Mandy Bergman, Cindy (Kenny) Stein, Kristin and Alexandra Zerbisias and Laurence Blandford, great granddaughters Stephanie Kirolivanos and Betsy and Sarah Stein and great-great granddaughter Violet Kirolivanos. Born in Montreal to Anthony Glezos and Eirini Zevgolis of Apiranthos, Naxos, Greece, Loula was the eldest girl in a raucous and loving family that weathered tough times through the Great Depression. Loula married her beloved Peter in 1938 and became his partner in all senses. Together, they ran several businesses, including Deli-Q restaurant in the Cote St. Luc Shopping Centre. Throughout World War II, she worked tirelessly for the Red Cross and the Greek War Relief Fund. She also volunteered as bookkeeper and corresponding secretary to the Greek Community of Montreal. After that, and as President of the Hellenic Ladies Benevolent Society, she volunteered as interpreter for Greek-speaking newcomers at the Royal Victoria and the Jewish General Hospitals. Following Peter's death in 1968, Loula worked at non-profit agencies aiding immigrant women to Montreal. She later became a case worker at Ville Marie Social Services, focusing on violence against women and children, the needs of senior citizens and legal and economic assistance for single mothers. A progressive and dynamic woman, she believed in women's rights. Along with her sisters, Margo and Sophia, she supported the Shield of Athena, which aids victims of violence, from the time of its inception. She remained an esteemed advisor to the organization until she retired from public life. Best known for her open heart and mind, Loula opened her home to anybody needing a feeling of family. Her kitchen resonated with lively conversation and her table always laden with the cooking which made her family the envy of everyone. Very special thanks to longtime caregiver and companion Mariam Kabagani as well as Noemi Abenoja and Conchita Alayay who tended to Loula as if she were their own mother. She loved them as daughters. Grateful acknowledgements to the kind staff of Jewish ElderCare Centre where Loula spent her final years. The funeral will be held at 10 a.m., Friday, December 13, 2013 at the Mount Royal Funeral Complex, 1297 Chemin de la Forêt, Outremont, QC. Visitation will be on Thursday, December 12 between 2 and 5 p.m. and 7 and 9 p.m. In lieu of flowers, please consider contributions to the Shield of Athena, P.O. Box 25, Mount Royal Station, Mount Royal, QC, H3P 3B8
"What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead." - Nelson Mandela

Published in The Gazette from Dec. 12 to Dec. 13, 2013
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